In May 2019, the News and Observer reported that violent crime was on the rise in Durham, North Carolina since the start of the year. At one point, three homicides took place within an eight-day span. Currently, the figures for the end of the first quarter stand higher than they did last year for the same period of time.
Homicides are not the only violent crimes on the increase. Robberies and aggravated assaults also saw a 13% rise for the first quarter of the year. A total of 12 homicides, 199 aggravated assaults and 153 robberies took place at this time. One trend that concerned law enforcement was an increase in robberies of Hispanics at apartment complexes. Overall, burglaries declined.
To help combat the increase in violent crime, a member of City Council recommended installing acoustic gun surveillance systems. This might help police officers to identify and locate gun fire when it takes place, even if they may not be in the vicinity at the time. Over the past few years, the Durham Police Department received an average of 2,356 shots-fired calls per year.
According to the Charlotte Observer, the situation is similar. Violent crime increased by 20% for the second quarter of 2019. In fact, the recent spike in homicides in the area is more than the total homicides in 2018. Robbery increased by 9% and aggravated assault by 21%. Like in Durham, burglary was at least on the decline. Vehicle theft also saw a slight decline. Note that arrests overall increased by 4%.